Chico’s has been serving Hialeah crowds for almost 40 years now. It never closes, yes it’s open 24 hours a day. It can be best described as a Cuban Diner. It’s currently going through a renovation and everything probably looks better than the year it opened.
Many years ago I worked at Best Buy in Hialeah and we would come to Chico’s for some late night eats after our shifts were over. We’d order anything and everything from Cafe con Leche & Tostadas (Toasted & Buttered Cuban Bread) to Cuban Sandwiches and Palomilla Steaks. I remember enjoying not only the meal but the waitresses and of course the company, great memories.
My wife Marcela and I were looking for local restaurants to beef up our event Croquetapalooza and a few people on the Burger Beast Facebook had mentioned that we should hit up Chico’s. I was like, Wow! Chico’s, it’s been years but I was excited to return.
We walked right in and took a seat a table and before you knew it we had two glasses of water and Pansito on the table. My standard go to is either a Palomilla Steak or Bistec Milanesa but it was a Pollo a la Plancha kinda day this time. Please remember I had only really come here to eat Croquetas and couldn’t resist ordering a few other things when I was looking through the menu.
After those Croquetas arrived I was just flabbergasted. This is probably the purest Ham tasting Croqueta I’ve ever had. I had struck up a conversion with the gentleman who had brought us the Bread and it turns out that he is one of the two owners of Chico’s, Luisito. He brought out the other owner, who is the man behind the scenes in the kitchen. Jesus spoke of how the Croquetas are pure Ham with very little filler. They use the same Ham that goes into the Cuban Sandwiches. It doesn’t really take a rocket scientist to know that Chico’s Croqueta is legit.
We got into a lengthy conversation about Fritas and both of them mentioned how old school Cuba their Frita recipe is. It was settled, I also need to try one of those. I’m very critical of Fritas and folks who call sandwiches “Frita” when they’re not. They do not use house-made Julianne Potatoes or use a Cuban Roll but yes, the flavor profile of the patty fit right in there with Chorizo heavy Fritas I’ve had in the past. Who am I to disagree with an old Cuban recipe?
We closed out the meal with a good and not overly sweet Flan, no Cafecito this time around though.
I had a great time at Chico’s and found one of my new favorite Croquetas. If you’re in the area, drop in and give them a chance. Remember, locals rule.
Eat 24 Hours At:
4070 W 12th Ave Hialeah, FL 33012